Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Turnberry and its ruined castle

I did go down to the sea this weekend, just to make sure I wasn’t missing anything by not going out in my boat. It was left at home and I donned my walking boots rather than my wellington boots. I went to Turnberry on the Ayrshire coast simply because I had never seen Turnberry castle and wanted to get a photo or two of it for my collection.

Normally if I’m in the area, I park the car at Maidens and walk along the shore into the grounds of Culzean castle. This time I parked the car at the Turnberry carpark and walked along the shore in front of Turnberry golf course towards the lighthouse. It was a very blustery day and even the golfers were few and far between. However at over £100 for a round of golf, I can understand why.

This part of the shore was empty of dog walkers too. I had the beach to myself.

Well ... except for a handful of seagulls who thought it safer to wade in the water than risk flying in the wind.

Watching the waves break on the shore I was very glad I had left the boat at home. Call me a wet blanket if you must but I was feeling sea sick just thinking about bobbing about in a boat in those conditions.

I headed for Turnberry Lighthouse as I knew the castle was not far from it. This photo is taken from the tee on the famous Turnberry Lighthouse hole.

The Lighthouse is built on the site of the ruined Turnberry Castle. There are only a few ruined wall left marking the outline of the castle.

The castle belonged to Robert the Bruce’s mother and although its not definitely known if Bruce was born here, he certainly lived in the castle as a child. In 1307 the English captured the castle while Bruce was busy watching spiders wave webs in a cave. Later in life, around 1310, he ordered the castle to be destroyed to prevent it falling back into English hands. It was never rebuilt.

One reconstruction of the castle shows that there was a harbour on the seaward side. From the harbour, you could enter the castle through a portcullis and gate at this point. There was also a cave that may have been part of the castle dungeons.

After exploring the ruins and getting my photographs I headed back along the shore towards the hotel. It was still too windy for even the English golfers.

Not a person or boat was to be seen anywhere. I decided to go home to watch the TV and dream of summer.

No comments: